Benz Update

August 14, 1991

The Rev. Bert Benz experienced heart irregularities Saturday, forcing doctors to send him back to the intensive care unit at the Markey Cancer Center, University of Kentucky, in Lexington.

Although his condition remains serious, the cardiac problems have stopped, said KayYelton, spokeswoman for the center, where the 47-year-old Hampstead minister has been a patient for a month.

Benz, pastor of Faith Baptist Church, has chronic myelogenic leukemia. On July 19, he received a bone marrow transplant from his 12-year-old daughter, Lauren.

A biopsy performed last week showed earlysigns of engraftment of the transplant, said Dr. Jean Henslee-Downey. Doctors plan to give the pastor a marrow boost on Friday with additional marrow donated by Lauren.

The Rev. Rudy Tidwell, interim pastor at the Hampstead church, left for Kentucky after services Sunday to be with the Benz family. He told his wife, Peggy, he visited Benz in ICU Monday.

"The family remains optimistic but they are completely exhausted," said Peggy Tidwell. "My husband feels like he needs to stay there to support them."

Linda Benz has been staying in an apartment provided by Gardenside Baptist Church in Kentucky.

The congregation here continues its prayers on behalf of Benz.

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